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Sanghurst Chronicle - Part 1 - Chapter 2 - Subterfuge


BoLtStEr2002

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{Beginning}

Spoiler

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Shea: That really is a throne and a half.

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Eleavoir: It is indeed.

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Eleavoir: Any interest in it yourself?

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Shea: Not me. Too much responsibility.

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Knight: It's forbidden to speak of a successor before the vote.

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Shea: That's a fair point, Vinctumunus. You seemed to hate me while we discussed the terms of an end to a clan yet now you wish to speak with me. What do you seek?

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Eleavoir: No need to be so venomous young one, I was only asserting my position there. It meant nothing.

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Shea: Certainly didn't feel like that. So I ask again. What do you want?

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Eleavoir: Someone needs to take over this place. That someone is going to need advisors, From everywhere.

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Eleavoir: I simply desire someone skilled in fighting to aid me when making decisions. 

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Shea: (Sure you do. Friends close and enemies closer is a common doctrine).

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Shea: Why would you want someone at the top of a competing clan?


Eleavoir: You're not at the top, Solomia Sanghurst is. 

Shea: My loyalties lie with her.

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Eleavoir: I only ask you consider it. For your own sake and mine.

Shea: Sure I'll think about it.

Eleavoir: Good.

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Shea: (Not even two days and it's beginning).

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Shea: (Vinctumunus is the last clan I'd want to ally myself with but that might just mean Sanghurst survives too. Sanghursts aren't strong and if there were to be a war we'd likely be the first to go to the chopping block).

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Shea: I need a walk.

Spoiler

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Sol: It's a wonderful night, isn't it? Clear sky and-

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Shea: It's only the weather Sol, don't get too excited...and it could change in an instant, we're pretty much in the Jeralls.

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Sol: Can't you just enjoy this for a moment. Please.

Shea: Sure I can.

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Shea: So what is it you want? You've got me trapped on a balcony, under a starry night sky.

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Sol: I hadn't thought of that before but now that you mention it...

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Sol: I could do a lot and nobody would know a thing...

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Shea: Unfortunately, the place is full of vampires who'll hear everything.

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Sol: That never used to stop us.

Shea: We were both also a lot younger then.

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Shea: Much younger, more brash, less caring.

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Shea: That, and I'm not in the mood now.

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Sol: You know, you've gotten to serious. Liven up a little!

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Shea: It's not a matter of being serious or not. You've just caught me at a bad time.


Hours later...

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Shea: (Why does everything make me pray for something new? I'm back with my love but now I'm stuck in a hive of evil and it's only going to breed here. Is it too much to ask for safety?)

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Shea: (I don't even want my curse gone now, just keep us, no, keep her safe.)

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Errwarld: Didn't take you for a pious one.

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Shea: I'm not. I didn't take you to be someone playing dress up with a different mask every time I see them.

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Errwarld: Fair enough. Do you know these?

Shea: Bloodbells, like deathbells but worse. Deathbells might take a day, these'll take weeks of agony. Or they'll kill a vampire in a couple of days.

Errwarld: But quite visually stunning. Beautiful.

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Shea: Good to know, but I trust you didn't call me over to talk about the flora.

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Shea: Or did I massively misjudge you?

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Errwarld: No, you haven't misjudged. I'm just giving you a warning.

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Errwarld: You think you've grown up, but you haven't and they're going to play on that for all it's worth. 

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Errwarld: I though I'd warn you before they start trying to pull you to one side of the fence.

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Shea: So you're worried because they're setting the battle lines?

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Errwarld: I wouldn't say battle lines but it could come to that, definitely.

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Shea: So which side are you on?


Errwarld: None.

Shea: Should I do the same?

Errwarld: No. Do the complete opposite, no one likes someone sitting on the fence in these matters.

Shea: But you do.

Errwarld: I organise the entire council, I have to stay neutral.

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Errwarld: But I would warn you, Vinctumunus isn't what she seems.

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Shea: So is she better or worse?

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Errwarld: Not for me to say.

Shea: So only I can make that decision?

Errwarld: Exactly, now, I'd love to chat but your blood can handle the sun, mine can't, so I'd very much like to retire to the castle. But take a walk. Make sure you have a clear head for what lies ahead.

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Shea: That was odd. But what did he mean? Vinctumunus isn't what she seems.

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Shea: (I suppose High Elves always do seem to have a second plan going on. Maybe I should get to the bottom of that.)

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Knight: Lady Sanghurst! Vera told me she'd like a word with you. 'In the place where gems are hollowed and the souls are trapped again.' Don't know what that means, I trust you do.

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Shea: I do, thank you.

Spoiler

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Shea: I hate this place. 

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Shea: Why'd she make me go through here?

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Shea: The place where...everything changed...

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Shea: No! No! Think, has to be in the Soul Cairn, where else would this lead to. Maybe?

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Shea: I think it's that one.

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Shea: I hope so. The wrong one doesn't lead anywhere...well anywhere liveable at least.

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Shea: Right, yes this place. Why did Vera insist on bringing me here?

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Shea: It's all so dead. I know vampires are too but this is somehow...worse.

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Vera: So you haven't forgotten about this place. When we were-

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Shea: When we were younger, stupider. This was no place for us.

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Vera: But I imagine you know why I've brought you here.

Shea: Well I-

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Vera: Someone needs to take lead of the vampires in Skyrim, we can't let it be Vinctumunus, she'd gladly wipe us all out. So I'd ask you to embrace me, and what I'd stand for.

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Vera: We could reunify the vampires, take our true place and-

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Shea: You're sounding like Harkon at the moment, you know what happened to him, right?

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Vera: I would merely have asked that you listen to me, but you can no longer do that?

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Shea: I know what you're playing at. You want my vote so you can get to the top and you'll offer me anything to get it. That sound about right?

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Vera: I only offer you a guarantee of survival.

Shea: That's not that great an offer.

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Vera: I'll be honest, the Sanghurst line is weak, it always has been. Your powers of the blood have thinned and now you can only...what? Stand in the sun, have a few more emotions. And for you it's made you exceptionally...unique.

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Shea: So admit it, you want rid of the weak. You'd only let us live if you got our votes. Hardly seems like a good offer. 

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Vera: Fine. You deserve all that comes to you. You travelled the world to try and remove your gift, yet you couldn't. So you act as though you never wanted it gone. But I see through you. You don't feed, you don't partake in the hunts we have. You don't want to be one of us.

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Vera: Perhaps, that's another weakness in your bloodline.

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Vera: Maybe it's a way of weeding out the weak. You and your sister are the last generations of Sanghurst, it'd make sense it'd be the weakest.

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Shea: What happened to you?

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Vera: So you're going to leave because you can't accept the truth?

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Vera: My family were right about you all those years ago. They said you a coward from the beginning. 

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Shea: Then let that be my legacy. Better than someone who prolonged their legacy by giving in.

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Shea: Goodbye, Vera...maybe it's for the best...

Spoiler

The next night...

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Shea: 'The Vinctumunus originally hail from the Somerset Isles but were exiled after their transformation. An entire family of ninety three vampires were cast out and left for Skyrim.' So Eleavoir must be at least halfway down the line of succession.

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Shea: 'The Vinctumunus, despite being proficient in magic, rarely use it as they appear to be deathly allergic, or they at least have some unnatural reaction to it.' Interesting, who would've thought they'd be so well documented.

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Errwarld: That is one of their weaknesses, yes. They're proud of their history and lineage but it keeps them exposed.

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Shea: Errwarld I find it hard to believe they'd let this all be written down. That or they know the weakness so well that they can defend against it.


Errwarld: Perhaps.

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Errwarld: But with all respect, why are you researching this in the library, haven't you got a study you could use? That's more...discreet.

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Shea: You said it yourself, they're proud of their history, why wouldn't they want us reading.

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Errwarld: Perhaps there's something better you could be doing though.

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Errwarld: There have been a lot of ravens from her tower, lacking explanation.

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Shea: And this is the place to discuss that?

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Errwarld: Yes, there's not a soul here. 

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Errwarld: Get in and out quick, you might find something useful.

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Shea: Maybe, but what guarantee do I have that you won't tell a guard and get me caught?

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Errwarld: Because we have a common goal, we have no stomach for Eleavoir and her ideas.

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Errwarld: It'd help us both and I'm a lumbering moron when I need to be quiet. You'd be...better suited.
 

Spoiler

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Shea: Why did I ever agree to this?

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Shea: And maybe with what I just saw with Vera, she might be a better option.

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Shea: Nice room she has.

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Shea: Not exactly a closet full of skeletons like I expected.

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Shea: That must be where she sends her letters from.

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Raven: Caww!

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Shea: Locked. Of course. Why would it be open?

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Shea: I don't suppose you're going to rat me out. Are you?

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Raven: Caw. Ca caw!

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Shea: I hope that's a no.

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Shea: Now, there can't be a masterful lock in just a cupboard...

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Shea: Here we are.
'I write to you concerning Shea Sanghurst. I've already sent letters referring to her sister and the other clan leaders. Shea seems odd, a little out of place at court. Though I believe that may play into our hand. Someone with a little more humanity than those at vampire court could be beneficial if we rose to power.'

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'I fear that I may have scared here away at the first meeting and I did criticise her determination. You know of her antics trying to remove her vampirism, I nearly brought it up but chose not to. For now, her sister seems firmly neutral and I don't believe either will try to take a side. She might be young, but I'll respect whatever decision she makes, even if it is the wrong one.'

Ibregggg o

'Vera appears to be the main opposition for the power struggle. No other party has made it overtly obvious that they desire the throne. I gave Shea the offer of a High Council decision but I fear that her sister could complicate matters. It's hard to read her, but I think Shea wants the quiet life that vampirism doesn't offer. And I deeply regret what father and mother put them both through. Perhaps I feel some guilt for that. Without what they did, they wouldn't be here now but maybe they'd have been happier. Sorry, I'm rambling I know. I'll send more letters when I get the opportunity.'

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'With unending love as always, your Eleavoir.'

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Guard #1: All these vampires here, it isn't just weird for me, is it?

Guard #2: Oh stop talking will you, Eleavoir might be up their and she'll gladly tear your tongue out!


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Shea: Shit!

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Shea: Wait...what's that- no what are you thinking?

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Shea: The balcony, looks like I'll have to take a jump...

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Shea: There we go!




 

Spoiler

Hi! Hope you enjoyed the read and I'm thankful that you did read. Any feedback is greatly appreciated. Thanks again!

 

3 Comments


Recommended Comments

I liked the warm colors and backgrounds, specially those reds and blue, quite fitting for a vampires' castle. The lighting on some characters (such as Errwarld in the garden scene) could use some tuning though. Plot-wise, the sotry slowly unravels, with a quite immersive overall result.

 

Malicia : « Tirloque said you didn't like our comments, Mr Bolster, and that he didn't know if it was his or mine. So, I'm not gonna say anything, no. shut-mouth.png

 

               But I very know it's because of Tirloque. :classic_dodgy: »

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